Site Reliability Engineer - France
Posted on: November 22, 2021
Who We Are
Element is the startup that employs the core team behind matrix.org
- the leading project for secure, open decentralised
Matrix's mission is to make messaging as open as email - allowing
everyone to choose where their data is hosted, enjoy private
conversations thanks to advanced encryption, and ultimately be in
control of their own communication.
Matrix powers our flagship messaging apps for the web, iOS &
Android, along with Element Matrix Services, our SaaS platform for
personal & professional use.
We build things for everyone, and we know we can't succeed without
a diverse team. Our hiring process is designed to give candidates
the best chance to show us what you can do. If we ever fall down on
this, please let us know.
About Your Team
The client services team will be a brand new team within our Site
Reliability Engineering (SRE) practice. This team will work with
the Professional Services team to deliver Element Matrix solutions
to our enterprise and government clients.This team will bring the
best of various parts of our products together to solve customer
specific problems. This team will also be working to enable
customer teams in becoming proficient in managing their own Element
The SRE practice today is comprised of a small team of five
engineers working hard at transforming how operations and
infrastructure is done within the organisation. We come from
various backgrounds and are today a remote-first team with all of
us working from different countries across Europe.
As part of our day-to-day operations, we use or touch on (in no
particular order) AWS, UpCloud, Postgres, Grafana, Prometheus,
Loki, Elasticsearch, PagerDuty, Python, AWS EKS, Red Hat OpenShift,
GitLab, GitHub, Ansible, AWX, Terraform, Keycloak, Linux,
Containers, Golang, HAProxy, Nginx to name a few.
The Team Today
The Client Services team is a brand new dedicated function we are
building within the operations team. You will be one of the first
members of this team. You will be assisted by the current members
of the broader SRE practice. The following functions are what we do
in service of our customers.
We consult with customers about best practices on running Element
Matrix services on their premises. Translation - we try and
determine what hardware they need, what architecture best suits
their needs and what components are required for them to be
We manage customer deployments on their behalf. Translation - we
are on the hook for keeping customer deployments secure, up-to-date
and ticking along smoothly. Depending on the customer we sometimes
monitor their alerts and react to them; sometimes we are there only
to help debug production issues. This also means, we ssh into their
boxes, we run Ansible/terraform, we setup Grafana/Prometheus
We support the business in closing deals. Translation - we are part
of pre-sales processes where we help identify solutions that fit
customer needs and validate solutions.
The Team Tomorrow
We are focussed on customer enablement. Translation - we provide
customers with the knowledge and foundation to manage a successful
deployment. We embed ourselves in customer teams, for a period of
time, to assist them in developing reliable CI/CD pipelines and to
advise them in selecting the correct infrastructure.We are focused
on Site Reliability. Translation - we codify the operational tasks,
automate the recovery from incidents and enable customers to manage
cattle not pets.
We are cloud native and container first. Translation - our focus is
on developing and delivering artefacts and automation predominantly
targeting customers' cloud environments. Particularly, we are
focused on container native environments running on both kubernetes
clusters at scale.
If you have any questions before making an application reach out to
Mohand (@mohandbouhadouf:matrix.org) via https://app.element.io
We are presently in the process of working towards our tomorrow.
And we want to bring more team members along for this journey. We
want to work with collaborative and kind people who do not mind
experimenting with the unknown.
What We Care About
You are kind, empathetic and willing to share your knowledge and
You are willing to ask for help and to provide it when you can.
You are keen on learning new things and figuring out how to improve
the status quo.
We try (operative word here) to focus on getting things done right,
but this does not mean we do it right the first time as being
pragmatic is important to us.
What Are The Basics You Need
We do not need you to have any experience in decentralised
communication, nor do we expect you to be experienced and
knowledgeable in everything. However, there are few things that
being familiar with will let you get your job done.
Linux Servers - You can ssh into a machine, update packages, get at
logs, figure out why it is misbehaving.
Containers - You have built your own containers before, used it in
anger, and understand the basics of how they work.
Infrastructure automation - You have worked with at least one of
Terraform or Ansible. We are also happy if you have worked with
similar tools, like Puppet, Chef or Saltstack etc.
Public/Private Cloud Providers - You have used at least one of AWS
/ Azure / GCP. Hopefully, you have used terraform to automate
infrastructure on them.
Programming languages - You have written some meaningful code that
did some of your automation for you. Preferably in Python or Go.
You are able to look at an unknown code base and understand it
enough to try debugging it in production.
Architecture and Solution Design - You can design solutions for
complex use cases. You are able to take customer needs and product
constraints into account when identifying what works and what does
As this is a customer facing role, we really appreciate applicants
with the following experience. Or at the very least enjoy doing the
Engaging customers as a representative of the company.
Working through customer requirements and identifying solutions and
architectures that fit.
Written and verbal communication.
Embedding within customer organisations to help them understand and
learn about our products.
Saying no with context when appropriate.
About The Process
Opportunity fit. At this stage you will be talking to the person
you will be reporting to and a member of our people team. We will
talk a bit about the company, about you, about the role etc. You
will get a chance to ask questions and understand better if the
role fits what you are looking for. Obviously, we will have a few
questions for you as well, but no whiteboards or algorithms
Offline coding exercise. We will send you a coding exercise,
nothing overly complex. Something that might take someone 1-2 hours
to complete. We are looking for your approach, an insight into how
you solve a problem and basic smell tests on your coding
Interview with the team. In this stage, you will be talking to a
couple of members from the team. We will talk about your coding
exercise submission and talk about improvements etc. You will get
an opportunity to talk to the team about the day-to-day, the
organisation, the team, their experiences etc. We will definitely
ask some technical questions here. We are looking for insights into
how you communicate your ideas and technical solutions. We expect
the conversation to be two-way.
Architecture. Here, you will be talking to our VP of Engineering
and the Founder/CTO. Expect conversations around architecture,
building at scale etc. You will get the opportunity to understand
more about Element's history, it's future direction etc.
Our general approach is to treat people like adults and acknowledge
that by being flexible we create an environment for people to do
their best work. For more details here is our manifesto. That said
specific points that differentiate us.
Our projects are almost entirely Free and Open Source Software,
with high visibility and a large, enthusiastic community.
We fully support remote and flexible work, but also maintain
offices in London and Rennes.
We strive to create a family friendly environment, many of the team
have small children and we look to accommodate that as best we
People tend to stay with the company for a long time, we take this
as a sign that we have a cohesive supportive culture, that we have
engaging challenging work and that people can develop their skills
and careers here for the long term.
Since our technology is relevant to anything that requires
real-time comms, the role provides exposure to a wide range of
domains from more traditional web and app development down to VoIP
Element does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, colour,
religion, age, national origin, marital status, disability, veteran
status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or
any other reason prohibited by law in provision of employment
opportunities and benefits.
Keywords: Element, Scranton , Site Reliability Engineer - France, Professions , Walton, Pennsylvania
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